Mele e Pere, a new Italian trattoria is opening in London's Soho today.
The 92-seater restaurant on Brewer Street, which was formerly Philippe Seiler's Va Bene, is owned by Peter Hughes and chef Andrea Mantovani.
The interior has been designed by the Narrative and features a spacious ground floor entrance with a window display full of hundreds of Murano glass apples and pears. The staircase is covered in antique hand-painted tiles while the restaurant on the lower level features a mix of vintage tables and chairs.
Another feature is the copper bar, which showcases a display of both homemade and classic brand vermouths, and offers a large selection of vermouth-based cocktails.
Mantovani, whose career has included stints at Harry's Bar, Arbutus and Wild Honey, will use quality seasonal ingredients to create authentic northern Italian dishes.
Typical choices on the Mele e Pere launch menu include snails with pecorino, parsley and guanciale; orecchiette with romanesco broccoli and baby squid; tagliatelle with beef cheek ragù; charcoal-grilled shoulder of lamb with stuffed artichokes; roast cod with fennel; ‘Nonna's' apple cake; and warm zabaglione with lingue di gatto biscuits. Prices will range from £7.50-£12.50 for starters, £11.50-£24 for main courses, and desserts will be £5.50.
The restaurant manager is Hugo Roldan, who was previously at Lena Restaurant and Maze. There will be a short, mostly Italian wine list starting at £16.50 (bottle), with approximately 30 bins available by the glass (from £3).
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By Kerstin Kühn
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